Mayweather vs. McGregor predictions: Tyson, Holyfield, famous fighters' picks
Fighters and legends from the boxing and MMA sides of the aisle give their take on Saturday's fight
Saturday is shaping up to be one of the most entertaining days in fighting history. When Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor step into the boxing ring at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, all eyes will be on the two fighters as they prepare to do battle over 12 rounds live on Showtime PPV beginning at 9 p.m. ET. Most are expecting to see a Mayweather rout, while the rest are holding out hope for a McGregor win.
Over the last few months, just about every professional fighter from both boxing and MMA has been asked for their take on the superfight. We decided to compile as many as we could find and put them together below. Everyone from current UFC featherweight champ Max Holloway to heavyweight champion and legend Mike Tyson gives their take
Eddie Alvarez: "Conor has about three or four rounds to get this done ... Within those four rounds, if you don't think Conor can knock this guy out, you're an idiot or you just don't know fighting because it can very well happen. If he doesn't get it done by then, then it could look very one-sided. The technical boxing of Floyd Mayweather is enough to make it look really one-sided for him. But Conor, there is a very real chance that he can put him away." (ESPN)
Jose Aldo: "There is no comparison. It is not similar. Totally different. There is no way McGregor can defeat Mayweather. Mayweather has done this his entire life, and it's a different sport." (L.A. Times)
Randy Couture: "I think [McGregor] has a 1-in-10 chance to win. I think we're dealing with arguably the best defensive boxer in 20 years that top boxers on the planet haven't been able to touch him. What makes anybody think that Conor McGregor, who's 0-0 in professional boxing, is going to go out there and touch Mayweather, I don't think it's going to happen. I think Conor's going to try to be aggressive and bring the fight. He's the longer, younger fighter, and I think the more he comes at Mayweather, the more he's going to get hit." (Fox Sports)
Nate Diaz: "I think it's a big publicity stunt, but my take on a boxing match between the two -- I think McGregor's got a good chance to make something happen in [the first] two or three rounds. But I think he's got an amateur style where he's only got good movement, good punches for six, eight minutes, and I think that's too amateur for Mayweather. I'm just saying he's got a puncher's chance -- if anything." (CSN Bay Area)
Max Holloway: "The big winner of that fight is Dana White and UFC. It's a show. Everybody keeps saying it's not good, it's not bad. This guy's coming out of retirement to fight Conor. It's not like he's this champion defending these belts and then Conor's jumping in to fight Floyd for a championship. Floyd was just chilling and doing his own. He wanted to come back for an intriguing fight, and he got an intriguing fight." (MMAJunkie)
Demetrious Johnson: "I'm riding with Conor. I think Conor, he can probably get it done sooner if he goes out there being ferocious, but I'm going with Conor. I think Conor's gonna get the job done. It's hard to say. I'll tell you what: He ain't gonna make a big check like that in the UFC. Hopefully Conor goes out there and knocks Floyd out, and then he can go ahead and fight the winner of GGG and 'Canelo' Alvarez. I'd love to see that." (TMZ)
Jon Jones: "When you live the way Floyd does, he has all the resources to stay healthy and on top of his game. I think what makes this fight interesting is Conor McGregor's punching power, but at the same time, guys like Miguel Cotto, [Oscar] De La Hoya, all these guys have tremendous punching power. But what they have that McGregor doesn't is years of experience and tightness to back up that punching power. There are so many guys in UFC who have that punching power but can never land that shot on me. If I were a betting man, I'd say you have to side on the side of greatness." (Fox Sports)
Pat Miletich: "From all the different tactical technique things, just to make it very simple, I would train him to cheat the entire time within the rules. To make it as rough and as close to a street fight as possible and also to turn it into an anaerobic fight and not an aerobic fight. That's the only way Mayweather is going to get tired -- if he goes anaerobic -- and that's the only thing I would be looking for." ()
Anderson Silva: "This is a different sport. Conor is the best now. Conor have good condition for talking about this fight. I think Conor broke the everything. It's a new challenge for Conor. It's a different sport. Mayweather is no simple guy, no MMA guy. This is different sport. I train in box for a long time in my life, when I go to sparring with professional guys, it's so different. Timing is different, movement is different. People need to respect both sports, but boxing is different." (MMAFighting.com)
Tyron Woodley: "I'll be honest, me and Conor ain't really see eye to eye on a lot of things. At the end of the day, I still want to scrap him, but I'm betting on Conor. You know why? I bet a grand, I win 6,500 bucks. I bet two grand, 13 grand. It's freaking combat sports. Anybody got a chance at all times, so I'm willing to lose for the chance to win because that's crazy that somebody that is that big of a underdog.
"Like on paper, you and I can see how and why. Who knows how it might go? I might be able to bet 100 bucks to win 1000. He might be plus 1000 at the end of the day when people really start putting their analytical hats on this fight and style match up." (The Morning Wood Show)
Mike Tyson: "Conor's not skilled enough to box with Floyd. If he fought UFC and then Floyd boxed, then that would be more exciting. Then we'd see how Floyd deals with kicks to the leg. But Conor's not a boxer." (Eye Sport Dubai)
James Toney: "Conor McGregor will make more money than he's ever made, but he's not a fighter in this game. He has no chance. McGregor's a UFC fighter. He doesn't know how to punch. He's going to swing for the fences, get counter-punched and Floyd's knocking him out in two to three rounds." (L.A. Times)
Deontay Wilder: "It's like Floyd always say, 'It's like robbing a bank because it's easy money.' It's an easy fight for him. I think he knows it. I think it's more of a money stunt on McGregor's behalf. Everybody that fight Floyd, they think about the money, some of them really think they can beat him and they can go in there and really test him like [Marcos] Maidana did, you know Maidana was really hungry to beat him. But with McGregor, everybody got a chance, this is fighting and whoever got the better strategy will win, but this is easy money for Floyd." (FightHype.com)
Anthony Joshua: "It's probably [going to be] a landslide. Look at the great fighters Mayweather's fought, and he's made them look average. Some of the fighters Mayweather's fought would probably beat Conor McGregor as well. Conor can't really compete. He's coming out of his field and going into Mayweather's domain. Even though he's an excellent fighter in UFC, he's not an excellent boxer. Him crossing over is going to be a real big challenge." (Sky Sports)
Shane Mosley: "MMA and boxing is like a sprinter running against a long-distance runner in their fields, it just doesn't work. Strategically, I see Mayweather having a great time in there, smiling and laughing while McGregor is trying to hit him and find him. I see McGregor noticing how hard Mayweather hits, thinking that he doesn't hit that hard. When he gets hit by Mayweather, he's going to be like, 'Oh wow, this is different from UFC punches.' I think Floyd, if he wants to, can knock him out by the fourth or fifth round. I think that he'll give the fans a show." (Fox Sports)
Ricky Hatton: "I'm a big Conor McGregor fan, and if he ever watches this interview, I hope he doesn't take this to heart, because he's like me. He's a real guy, he's a comedian, he's a character, he's a colorful person, and when you watch his style of fighting I absolutely love the bloke. But it's two different sports, and I couldn't hit [Mayweather], Oscar [De La Hoya] couldn't hit him, Canelo [Alvarez] couldn't hit him, Conor's not going to hit him." (TMZ)
Andre Ward: "I think McGregor will be wild for the first three rounds, but when he starts to tire, Floyd will take over and we could see a big knockout. Floyd Mayweather has put on shows for the best part of two decades, so he deserves to do whatever he wants and this isn't a sideshow, it's a massive event." (Sky Sports)
Errol Spence Jr.: "I've seen him stop guys in the gym with 16-ounce gloves. Bigger guys. He just beats them up. In his young career, you saw how he was knocking guys out. But now he's got hand problems, so he's not turning with it all the way, not putting 100 percent power into his punches. But he can punch hard. That's why a lot of guys, when he hits them, they start backing up or go on defense. They're not just walking through his punches. You haven't seen anybody who's walking through his punches. Even Marcos Maidana started backing up when Floyd started coming forward. (ESPN)
Evander Holyfield: "He would have to rough him up. He'd have to do something that get [Mayweather] frustrated and get into a battle. I think his only chance is getting into a battle." (TMZ)
Vasyl Lomachenko: "Nobody wins with Mayweather. I think his defense is the best, but I think it's just defense, not boxing skills. Not combination, he has speed and power, but a lot of people know about the problem with his hands." (EsNews)
Andre Berto: "If this were to be an upset, it would definitely be a big blow to the boxing game, for sure. Definitely, definitely. It's gonna be a big blow to Floyd's legacy as well. Just being undefeated and able to let some guy upset you and he's an MMA fighter and he probably talks a little more shit than you talk. It's gonna be tough for him to swallow if that happens.
"I see Conor coming in there really showing that bravado, showing that cockiness and showing that he's really there to fight, and somewhat trying to steal the stage from Floyd just with his antics and he kind of gets Floyd into a mind-game situation, has him pulling some type of mistakes and [Mayweather] gets caught with a big shot and gets hurt. And [McGregor] could stop him." (MMAFighting.com)
Michael Conlan: "The only chance I give Conor is his self-belief. He has self-belief I've never seen before, but he's taking on an almost impossible task." (L.A. Times)
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